During the recent slide, there were times when the pitching would do well, but the offense couldn’t muster 1 or 2 runs more to get the win. Then there were times where the offense would show up, but the pitching in that game would be atrocious. In the weekend series spilt at San Francisco, there was a little of both. If the Meta are going to make a serious push in the final month and a half, they will need both to be on their game at the same time.
This weekend saw the return of some key pieces that will be needed if the offense is going to come to life, an emergence by a journeyman outfielder, and another pitching gem on a Sunday for the second week in a row. As Monday morning starts, the Mets are back to 4.5 games out of the second wildcard race, with a key series against the Cardinals starting Tuesday.
Here are the 3 stars of the series:
Noah Syndergaard: 8 IP, 0 Earned Runs, 2 Hits, 2 Walks, 6 Strikeouts
With the starting pitching in flux due to injury concerns, and the bullpen being over taxed in recent games, Syndergaard pitched the second Sunday gem in 2 weeks. Thor did not give up his first hit until an infield single in the fourth. His efficient 98-pitch effort helped him to pitch through the 8th, and give the bullpen a much needed night off.
Justin Ruggiano: 5 for 8, Home Run, 3 Runs, 5 RBIs
After being picked up by the Mets when the Rangers dumped him in late July, Ruggiano made the roster when Jose Reyes went down with injury. However, Ruggiano himself was put on the DL just 6 days later. Making his return on Friday, Ruggiano went 3 for 5, including a Grand Slam in the 10-7 loss. He followed it up with a 2-3 day on Sunday.
Yoenis Cespedes: 5 for 13, Double, 3 Home Runs, 3 Runs, 4 RBI
He’s Baaaaaack. Cespedes also returned from the DL on Friday, and immediately became the 2015 Cespedes that helped drive the Mets to the Pennant. Cespedes blasted 2 Home Runs Saturday, and was just the offense needed with his 2-run shot just inside the left-field pole on Sunday. If Cespedes can continue to perform this way the next 6 weeks, the Mets might have a chance to get back into the race.